Types of Depression

Background

Depression is a mood disorder, meaning it affects the way one thinks, feels, and behaves. Symptoms of depression must be present for at least two weeks for someone to be diagnosed with it. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, signs and symptoms of depression may include (but are not limited to):

Types of Depression

  • Persistent feelings of sadness or anxiety
  • Feeling irritable
  • Loss of interest in hobbies
  • Moving and talking slower than normal
  • Difficulty making decisions and concentrating
  • Changes in appetite or weight
  • Aches and pains that do not respond well to treatment and lack a clear cause
  • Feeling hopeless
  • Feeling guilty, helpless, or worthless
  • Decreased energy or fatigue
  • Feeling restless
  • Problems with sleep, including insomnia or hypersomnia
  • Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts

You don’t have to experience every symptom in order to be depressed. In fact, most people don’t. Several persistent symptoms along with a low mood are required for diagnosis, but symptoms can vary depending on the individual, the stage of depression, and type of the illness they are experiencing.

Types of Depression

Depression can sometimes develop under certain circumstances or in ways that set it apart from other forms of depression. Some specific types of depression include:

  • Persistent depressive disorder. This is a depressed mood that lasts for more than two years. Someone diagnosed with this type of depression can have episodes of severe depression broken up by times when they experience less severe symptoms, but they must have symptoms for more than two years to be diagnosed with persistent depressive disorder.
  • Postpartum depression. This type of depression occurs after a mother gives birth to her baby. It is more extreme than the “baby blues”, or feelings of mild anxiety or sadness that clear up in a few weeks on their own. Postpartum depression can make it difficult for new mothers to take care of their babies and themselves.
  • Psychotic depression. Psychotic depression is a type of depression that includes severe depression along with psychotic symptoms such as hallucinations and delusions. Hallucinations are described as seeing or hearing things that aren’t there, and delusions are false fixed beliefs. Someone with psychotic depression may have delusions that fit in with a depressing theme, such as falsely believing they are terminally ill.
  • Seasonal affective disorder. Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, is brought on by the winter months when there is less sunlight. Depressive symptoms occur every winter and typically ease up in the spring.
  • Bipolar disorder. Although bipolar disorder is different from depression, the depressive episodes it brings about meet the criteria for major depression. Bipolar disorder is also characterized by periods of extreme euphoria or irritableness called mania, along with less severe periods called hypomania.

This list is not exhaustive. If you are experiencing the symptoms of depression, it’s important that you reach out to someone who can help.

How Pandora’s House Can Help

If you or a loved one are experiencing symptoms of depression in the North Dallas area, Pandora’s House Psychiatry can help. We are dedicated to serving our Collin County community with diligent psychiatric care delivered with sensitivity, understanding, and trust. At Pandora’s House, we strive to increase access to mental health care and raise awareness of the many benefits of treatment. To make an appointment, call us at (972) 784-3064 or visit us online today.

References

Information for this article comes from the National Institute of Mental Health.

Social Anxiety: Not “Just Being Shy”

It’s normal to be shy around strangers. It’s not uncommon to be nervous about public speaking and social gatherings. But when it reaches the point it has a significant impact on your life, that could be an indicator of something more serious. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, social anxiety (or social phobia) is defined as “intense anxiety or fear of being judged, negatively evaluated, or rejected in a social or performance situation.” Social phobia is ranked as the second most diagnosed anxiety disorder. 12% of the United States population meets the criteria for diagnosis. It usually starts during the teen years and is more likely to affect women than men.

Social Anxiety: Not "Just Being Shy"

Symptoms

There are two categories of social anxiety disorder: generalized and non-generalized.

Generalized

In the generalized category, symptoms are present in most social situations. This includes social interactions and performance situations. The symptoms are more severe than in non-generalized social anxiety disorder.

Non-generalized (Specific)

Symptoms in this category are present in specific social situations. They may fear one specific situation or several settings, but do not fear most situations.

Some symptoms include:

  • Little eye contact
  • Speaking with a soft voice
  • Avoiding social or performance situations
  • Difficulty being assertive
  • Experiencing test anxiety or refusing to take part in the classroom

Along with these behaviors, there are physical symptoms:

  • Rapid heart rate
  • Sweating
  • Trembling
  • Nausea
  • Rigid Posture
  • Panic Attacks

The development of other anxiety or mood disorders can occur, as well as substance abuse. Suicidal thoughts can also occur in severe cases.

Treatment

Some forms of treatment include:

  • Psychotherapy
  • Support Groups
  • Medications

The most successful treatment is a combination of medication and CBT or other psychotherapies.

At Pandora’s House, we provide high-quality, compassionate care with individualized treatment plans. Located in Farmersville, Texas, we provide care to the Collin County, Texas community. To start your journey towards recovery, please contact us to schedule an appointment.

Counseling and Covid-19

The current Covid-19 pandemic is unlike anything else; creating unprecedented anxiety, depression, chronic stress, and other mental health issues many have never experienced. Speaking with a trained professional can alleviate stress and worry, create positive thinking and mindsets, and create a cathartic and releasing experience. Here are some types of counseling to consider.

Counseling and Covid-19

GRIEF COUNSELING

Don’t be put off by the name—grief counseling is a versatile option. Grief is defined as any distress caused by loss or bereavement. Students lost their spring semester and seniors lost many final rituals; parents may have lost jobs; people, generally, have experienced a loss of life as they knew it. Some may have even lost a relative or friend to the pandemic. Grief counseling serves to explore the feelings of loss and process them healthily. Whether it serves to address losing graduation and prom, or a loved one, people have rightfully experienced significant loss in the last few months.

FAMILY COUNSELING

Stay-at-home orders across the country are forcing many families to spend long hours with each other that would otherwise be dedicated to school and work. Tensions are rising, siblings are bickering, and parents are unable to keep the peace. Family counselors aim to work out specific conflicts within a household by creating a treatment plan that involves each family member. With dedicated sessions to addressing personal conflicts within familial relationships, family counseling can rebalance the home and relieve strain.

PERSONAL COUNSELING

You might be thinking that your problem isn’t worth speaking to a counselor about—there are other, bigger issues going on. That statement couldn’t be more wrong; mental health is neither a competition nor an endurance test. Therapists and counselors are there to listen to whatever your stresses may be—and help you through them. Personal counseling can lead to better management of stress, an improved sense of self, and a release of pent-up emotions. Though speaking to friends can often create a feeling of shared experiences, speaking to a trained professional will help you mentally, physically, and emotionally.

Counseling services can be utilized no matter the circumstance you’re facing. With our telehealth visits, mental health treatment is more accessible than ever. For more help and resources, contact us today to get started.

3 Signs You Might Be Experiencing Depression

We all go through periods of sadness, but that’s not the same thing as experiencing depression. Depression is a serious mental health disorder that can start severely disrupting your life if left untreated. Sadness can be and is often a symptom of depression, but here are some other signs to watch out for:

3 Signs You Might Be Experiencing Depression

Loss of interest

Pay attention if you find yourself losing interest in activities that you used to enjoy. For example, maybe you’re an avid runner, but lately you’ve noticed that going out for a jog doesn’t give you the same positive feeling that it used to and you just don’t feel like running. This isn’t something you want to ignore. Loss of interest in pleasurable activities can be a symptom of a depressive disorder, so make sure you tell your doctor or mental health provider about these feelings.

Chronic fatigue

Of course, people feel tired for all sorts of different reasons, and exhaustion on its own doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re depressed. However, if you find that there’s been a significant decrease in your energy levels lately, especially if it’s accompanied by feelings of sadness, loss of interest in life, or other feelings like irritability, it may mean that you’re facing depression. Your doctor can examine you to rule out other possible causes for the chronic fatigue.

Worthlessness or hopelessness

If you’re having thoughts like: “Nothing will ever get better,” “I’m no good at anything,” or “I’m useless,” this might be a sign that you’re experiencing symptoms of depression. Nobody feels great about themselves all the time, but depression causes us to think even more negatively of ourselves and get stuck in a loop of critical self-talk. If these thoughts become so intense that you find yourself feeling suicidal or wishing you were dead, please contact emergency services.

Pandora’s House Psychiatry is committed to providing compassionate psychiatric care to the Collin County community. If you or your loved one are experiencing any of these symptoms, please contact us today to set up an appointment.

Physical, Mental & Emotional Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety is a necessary part of living, as it creates a sense of urgency to do things that need doing. Without worry or anxiety, we would do nothing. Anxiety, however, becomes a problem when it interferes with what we need and want to do. It also manifests in physical, mental, and emotional forms.  There are many different symptoms of anxiety disorders.

Physical, Mental & Emotional Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders

Physical Anxiety Symptoms

Physical anxiety symptoms are widely varied and differ for each person, but most of them are consistent enough to identify as unhealthy anxiety when considered together.

Typical physical anxiety symptoms include:

  • Increased Heart Rate
  • Difficulty Breathing
  • Cold Sweats
  • Shaky Hands
  • Internal Shaking
  • Dry Mouth
  • Nausea
  • Difficulty Sleeping
  • Loss of Appetite

If you experience several or more of these symptoms on a regular basis, or in specific situations, it’s likely that you are dealing with high levels of anxiety. In regard to specific situations, some people experience only one or two symptoms of anxiety in crowds, elevators, or even while being a passenger in a vehicle.

Mental & Emotional Anxiety Symptoms

Mental and emotional anxiety is more complicated, and it usually occurs in conjunction with physical symptoms of anxiety. Mental anxiety involves things like:

  • Uncontrollable Thinking
  • What-ifs or Doomsday Scenarios
  • Desire to Escape Situations
  • Constant Worry
  • Feeling Out of Control
  • Irritability
  • Self-Defeating Thoughts
  • Feeling Disconnected
  • Avoidance

Uncontrollable thinking occurs when the same thoughts continue to come into the mind, even though we don’t want to think about them. It also occurs when the mind envisions bad things happening without provocation. Similarly, what-ifs and doomsday scenarios are normal, but if they pop into the mind quite frequently, it’s a sign of problematic anxiety.

The desire to escape situations that seemingly pose no real threat to person or property is a key indicator of significant anxiety levels. This type of anxiety often relates to situations in the past that have not been emotionally processed.

Feeling disconnected to others can also be a sign of unhealthy anxiety, as well as avoidance of people and situations. These are strong indicators that anxiety is affecting behaviors, especially if the avoidance behaviors concern responsibilities and daily tasks.

Anxiety often mirrors symptoms of depression, and the two disorders frequently go hand-in-hand. For more information about anxiety and well-being, contact us.